BY: Eba Alobo
A body of Academics drawn across all the communities in Yakurr Local Government known as Yako Academy on May 15 embarked on a sensitization tour across the various communities in the Local government. The body which is made up of all academic staff of Yakurr descent drawn across various tertiary institutions both home and abroad distributed palliatives to each of the community visited. The palliatives include over a hundred wash bays, soaps, facemasks as well as flyers carrying the message of COVID-19 pandemic.Speaking during the community tour, Prof. Oka Obono, a renowned Professor of Sociology, University of Ibadan stated that the philosophy of the group is centred around unity of Yakurr nation, mentorship and community development. According to him “What we want to promote is unity among Yakurr communities, mentoring of the young ones, and contribute to the development of all communities”.On her part, the team leader, Prof. Mrs Joy Etiowo while addressing the chiefs, youths and women of each community visited sensitized them on the need to observe social distancing, cover their nose while sneezing, wash their hands with soap and water using the bays presented to them and observe all safety measures as presented in the flyers shared to them.Reacting, the Obol Lopon of Ugep appreciated the team for the gesture and assured that the message will be delivered to the entire community. On his part, the Obol Lopon of Ekori noted that he has been an advocate of safety measures and assured that the message will be passed across to all Ekori indigenes. According to him “We have instructed our people to try and get facemasks and get wash bays for those who can afford. Your visit is timely and important too. I appeal that we should not relent our effort in making sure we deliver the message properly to our people. I will certainly convey this message to all Ekori indigenes through every means available”.Also speaking, the Obol Lopon of Mkpani admonished the team to keep up with the good work and called for unity among Yakurr communities. On his part, the Obol Lopon of Nko appealed to the group to spread its tentacles across and ensure that all Yakurr indigenes stay COVID-19 free. In the same vein, the Ata of Agoi Ekpo admonished the academy to propagate the message of cultism saying “Preach the gospel of reduced cultism”. According to him, cultism has now become a major pandemic in Yako land.
On his part, the Eva of Inyima community promised to take the issue seriously saying “Since you’re here to lecture us on this Convid-19 issue, we will take it very serious because before now, we didn’t know much about it.”Also, the Chief of Assiga community assured of the deadliness of his people towards observing all the safety measures reeled out to them by the team.
Highpoint of the sensitization tour was the presentation of palliatives such as wash bays and soaps, flyers, and facemasks to each community visited.